It was back to the future for Auckland yesterday as bright red trams officially started trundling through the waterfront for the first time since 1956.
"Trams were enormously popular and they were taken away against the wishes of the average Aucklander, and so now we have brought them back," said mayor Len Brown.
He and Prime Minister John Key were at the dawn opening of the $120 million-refurbishment of the Queen City's Wynyard Quarter, which includes a new events centre, nine new restaurants and bars, an inner city park and the trams.
"This is a great step in Auckland becoming a really true international city. Secondly, it is a wonderful reintroduction of our community to our waterfront," Brown said.
Key agreed: "It's a very special landmark day, a step forward in the revitalisation of Auckland and the waterfront. I think it's a critical part of Auckland, a beautiful part of Auckland, one that's been locked away from Aucklanders for a long time."
Two historic red trams were driven around a 1.5km tramway loop by transport committee chairman Mike Lee.
- Sunday Star Times
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